It never happens all at once. Your dreams don’t materialize out of thin air with nothing more than a thought. And that’s okay. In fact, it’s so important that we don’t have that power as human beings. The idea of a goal is something to work towards. By nature, it takes more than desire or a positive attitude to make something happen, so where to begin?
We start with daily tasks: exercises –for our mind and for our body– that allow us to create a state of being which is better suited to our goal. If you want to pass a test, you have to study; if you feel like you aren’t making the money you need to make, you need to create smart habits to conserve what you already have; the same is true for your physical body. If you want to be Jungle Strong, you better start with creating the daily activities that will get you there.
When I realized I had a problem with eating to relieve stress and sleeping to insulate me from pain, I didn’t just wake up one day and say “TODAY I WILL BE THE PERFECT ATHLETE!” It took trying (and failing) at many disciplines before I realized what I really needed to activate and take control of my life’s direction.
My personal journey was motivated by a need to change my body for longevity and sustaining a very active lifestyle. This meant that, every day, I needed to eat smart, work smart, and train smart. Immediately my attention turned to the incredible machine I’m using to communicate this idea with you. It’s really limitless: you can spend a lifetime just looking through all of the motivational philosophies on the web, but the idea is to find just two or three that work perfectly for you.
Tony Robbins, considered by many to be the number one business and life coach in the world, swears up and down by the power of daily habits to achieve your goals. In one of his man great talks, Tony says, “Raise your standard! Through daily rituals you achieve massive goals and overcome huge problems. If we break these challenges down into bite sized pieces, we’re able to overcome them by taking on those little pieces day after day. Rituals define US.”
This couldn’t be more true. When I began my journey, I was still in high school; struggling with my home life and self image in ways only a teenager can, but I started with one commitment: 30 minutes of vigorous exercise 6-7 days a week. With the help of Mike Chang’s awesome workout videos, I was able to get through this daily challenge and feel fulfilled! Over the years, this habit evolved and changed: my workouts got longer, more complex, but also more effective. I added stretching, cooking, team sports with friends to the mix as time went on, and by the time I graduated from community college, I was living in a beautiful state each and every day I completed my daily routine. Why? Because what began as nothing more than an active time commitment became my personal daily salvation!
Anyone who knows me personally will tell you the effects inactivity has on my personality, but what about you? What do you need to THRIVE?
In an article he did with Business Insider, Tim Ferris, New York Times Best-Selling author of The Four Hour Work Week, described some of his daily rituals. You can read this a great synopsis of those habits below, or check out the full article here.
Here are the five rituals most important to Ferriss.
1. He Makes His Bed
“It’s hard for me to overstate how important this ritual has become,” Ferriss writes.
Making his bed every morning is a strategy that helps him execute on his first task of the day. This sets the tone for the rest of the day and helps give him a sense of control over his life.
“No matter how s—ty your day is … you can make your bed,” Ferriss writes. “And that gives you the feeling, at least it gives me the feeling, even in a disastrous day, that I’ve held on to the cliff ledge by a fingernail and I haven’t fallen. There is at least one thing I’ve controlled.”
It also means that at the end of the day, before going to bed, he is reminded of having gained control over his day at the very beginning. This helps him go to sleep with this feeling.
2. He Meditates
Ferriss asserts that four out of every five of the world class performers he’s interviewed have some kind of daily mindfulness practice. The most common mindfulness practice Ferriss encountered is meditation.
By meditating, “you’re practicing focus when it doesn’t matter (sitting on a couch for 10 minutes) so that you can focus better later when it does matter (negotiation, conversation with a loved one, etc.),” he writes.
Ferriss recommends first timers try listening to guided meditation or taking a course from Tara Brach, such as this one:
3. He Exercises
Ferriss recommends doing five to ten repetitions of any kind of exercise first thing in the morning. Ferriss does pushups, but you could do whatever you like.
“The 5 to 10 reps here are not a workout,” he says. “They are intended to ‘state prime’ and wake me up. Getting into my body, even for 30 seconds, has a dramatic effect on my mood and quiets mental chatter.”
After his reps, he likes to take a “30- to 60-second pure cold shower.”
4. He Drinks Tea
Ferriss drinks tea mindfully in the morning. He says it gives him the chance to be present through focusing on the act of drinking tea.
He has a particular type of tea that he drinks:
“This name [titanium tea] was a joke, but it stuck,” Ferriss writes. The tea consists of one teaspoon of pu-erh aged black tea, one teaspoon of dragon well green tea, and one teaspoon of turmeric and ginger shavings. He also adds coconut oil or Quest MCT oil powder.
It’s “excellent for cognition and fat loss,” Ferriss writes.
5. He Journals
Ferriss does two kinds of journaling:
One is for “getting unstuck or problem solving (what should I do?),” and the other is for “prioritizing and [for] gratitude (how should I focus and execute?).”
There are four categories for expressing gratitude: An old relationship that helped him out, an opportunity he had that day, something great that happened yesterday and something simple that is near him or within sight.
From personal experience, Ferris speaks the truth. These habits aren’t just working for the two of us; they’ve been shown to be affective for business leaders, creatives, and innovators of all kinds! There’s no lack of choices, so pick a few and put them to the test! The only way to lose is to do nothing at all, and in the jungle of the modern world, those who do nothing will surely get eaten. Stay active, stay focused, and always stay Jungle Strong.
Do you have daily rituals you’d like to share? Let us know what they are by leaving comments below, or reaching out to us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter!